“No Labels”, a group of political consultants claiming to be dedicated to rising above Washington DC partisanship and cynicism, has apparently become partisan and cynical. In a memo viewed by Yahoo News, No Labels is discovered to be the phony mouthpiece for moneyed interests many assumed it was. Rather than “solving problems” as is the stated purpose of the group, No Labels is consumed by the struggle for relevance in DC and ways to advance the interests of its wealthy donors.
The document also notes that No Labels sees Republicans taking control of the Senate as an opportunity for the organization to gain relevance as a “bridge” between the Congress and the White House. In other words, a group backed by Big Business wants a Congress controlled by Republicans so the Democrat in the White House will cut more pro-Big Business deals. Talk about rising above principle.
And though No Labels has positioned itself as a warrior against gridlock, an internal document obtained by Yahoo News suggests the group is banking on more political dysfunction in an attempt to find “opportunity” and relevance for itself.
The confidential document, distributed at No Labels’ May executive board meeting, outlines a “break through strategy” for the group, which despite raising millions and a buzzy-for-cable-news-talk launch, has struggled to find a foothold on the campaign trail or in the halls of Congress. The first point in that strategy is a “balance of power shift in the U.S. Senate,” an awkward position to outline, if not advocate, given No Labels’ aim of bipartisanship and that one of the group’s co-chairs, Democratic Senator Joe Manchin of West Virginia, currently sits in the majority caucus.
Awkward to say the least. The document also says that No Labels has “already begun back door conversations with Senate leaders to discuss this increasingly likely scenario.”
Most of No Labels’ budget goes to promoting itself and raising more money – mostly raised from corporate executives and hedge fund managers. The group’s pretentious statements have irritated both sides of aisle which, in a sense, has created more bipartisanship in Washington. But in terms of actual legislative achievement there is none to speak of.
No Labels is ironically the epitome of what everyone – of both parties – hates about Washington DC, a group of crass opportunists raising money to promote themselves by exploiting people’s concerns about public policy issues.